Sita Requests Rama to Practice Nonviolence


Seetha foresees danger in Rama's decision to eliminate the demons in Dandaka forest, without any provocation from their side, at the request of some sages. She narrates an old episode about a sage who in possession of a weapon became violent and cruel.

Chapter [Sarga] 9 in Detail

To Rama, the scion of Raghu and her husband, who started out when permitted by Sage Suteekshna, Vaidehi spoke this with friendly words. [3-9-1]

"Gross unjust will accrue to any in an abstruse way if his indulgence is enkindled merely by his own desire, and in this world it is possible to fend them off, to have recourse to justness... [3-9-2]

"Only three self-gratifications, the definite products of desire, are there: one is speaking fallacious utterances, which itself is worse, and worst than the other two malefic self-gratifications, where the other two are the fascination for other's wife, and the cruelness without enmity... [3-9-3, 4a]

Hunting, sleeping in daytime, abusing others, indulgence in women, three artistic impulses namely music, dance and drama, wasteful wandering, are the ten desires. Manu Smriti.

"The habit of telling specious words is not there with you in the past nor it will be there in future, oh, Raghava, then wherefrom the virtue-ruining desire for other's women can be there... [3-9-4b, 5a]

"Oh, king, earlier this vile desire for other's women is absent in you, nor it is there now, unobserved is such a desire in any corner of your heart oh, prince, for you are always interested in your own wife... [3-9-5, 6]

"You are conscientious, adherent of truth, and obliging father's orders, and in you virtue and truth, nay everything is established in you... [3-9-7]

"Oh, dexterous one, all this can possibly be shouldered by one with controlled senses, and oh, graceful one for a gaze, I am also aware of your sense control... [3-9-8]

"That third tendency to torture others' lives without enmity, that which will usually be effectuated unwarily, has now suddenly chanced before you... [3-9-9]

"Intending to safeguard the sages you have promised the dwellers in Dandaka forest, oh, valiant one, that you would eliminate demons in a fight... [3-9-10]

"Only in this respect you have started towards the well-known Dandaka forest along with your brother, and wielding bow and arrows...[3-9-11]

"Then on seeing your starting my mind is apprehensively upset, on verily reflecting about your bearing there appears to be no beneficial good for you... [3-9-12]

"Oh, brave one, your going towards Dandaka forest is not delightful to me, I tell the cause for that and listen to it as I tell...[3-9-13]

"Indeed on entering the forest along with your brother, and wielding bow and arrows, seeing the forest ramblers there, won't you deplete arrows on all of them... [3-9-14]

"The bow of warrior and the fuel of a burning fire if available within their reach; they immensely enhance their strength... [3-9-15]

"Once upon a time, oh, dexterous one, there was a pious and true worded hermit in some merited forest that was wonted by animals and birds... [3-9-16]

"Then Indra came to that hermitage handling a sword, and donning a soldier's guise, to cause hindrance to that hermit's ascesis... [3-9-17]

"Indra gave that best sword to store, there in that hermitage to that sage who is lasting in his ascesis, on a redeemable basis... [3-9-18]

"On receiving that sword, he who is duteous in guarding the entrustment, moved about in the forest always handling the sword, to safeguard the confidence reposed in him... [3-9-19]

"Wherever that dedicated guardian of that entrustment goes, even to obtain tubers or fruits, he did not go without that sword... [3-9-20]

"Carrying that sword always, that hermit slowly made his own faculty infuriated, loosing determination in ascesis... [3-9-21]

"Then with the constant association of that weapon that sage gradually became inadvertent, and smitten by vice he went to hell... [3-9-22]

"Thus, all this happened earlier, only owing the reason of associating with a weapon constantly, and the sequel of constant association with weapon is as good as constant association with fire... [3-9-23]

"In affinity and in respect I am reminding but not tutoring you, and in anyway improper is that thought of yours to wield your bow to kill the demons dwelling in Dandaka without any enmity, oh, brave one, undesirable is the killing of offence-less... [3-9-24, 25]

"For the valiant Kshatriya-s who are inclined in forests heartily, the purpose of the bow is this much 'safeguarding the sufferers...' [3-9-26]

"Where that weapon? Where this forest? Where the principles of Kshatriya? And where is sage-ness? All this is inconsistent... let us esteem the laws of the land... [3-9-27]

"Weapon admiring mind becomes maligned with avariciousness, you may therefore follow the tenet of Kshatriya-s on going to Ayodhya again... [3-9-28]

"Everlasting satisfaction will be there to my father-in-law and mothers-in-laws, on your becoming a devout sage even after forfeiture of kingdom... [3-9-29]

"From virtuousness prosperity emanates, from righteousness happiness, and by honorableness all are achieved, and this universe is the essence of probity... [3-9-30]

"Experts will make efforts to exhaust their own selves with those and those principles, thus they realize sublimity [the quality or state of being elevate or exalt especially in dignity or honor]... unachievable is pleasure by pleasuring alone... [3-9-31]

"Always tread along the righteousness with a pure mind, oh, gentle one, and especially in these sagely forests... you know everything in all the three worlds, in all its nuances... [3-9-32]

"I cite all this with my womanly waver, and who is capable to talk to you about dharma? Ponder mindfully along with your brother, and what that is appropriate, you do it...but not belatedly... [3-9-33]

Thus, this is the 9th chapter in Aranya Kanda of Valmiki Ramayana, the First Epic poem of India.

Sriman Moola Rama Vijayate